While it wasn't the only reason I picked up an Apple Watch Series 4 earlier this year, the electrocardiogram feature Apple demonstrated at its big September event was certainly one of the smartwatch's most unique features. I doubt there's anything wrong with my ticker, and Apple's implementation still isn't as good as the ECG you'd get at the hospital — of course — but it's fun to see your heart's electrical activity on your wrist.
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Normally, when we review products at Lifehacker, we try to follow a set format that focuses on the main things that matter; purpose, specs, what's good, what's bad and a recommendation. And while we've already reviewed the new Apple Watch, I've had the chance to use it in a situation I didn't really anticipate - as a replacement for an iPhone. This is the first Apple Watch I've had with cellular comms so I decided to use it differently to previous versions.
I share my bedroom with at least one person, sometimes two or three depending on whether any children migrate during the night. So I feel like I have a superpower when I wake up and silence my alarm five minutes before it actually goes off. I’m not super, of course: It’s just a silent alarm on my Apple Watch.
Most Apple Watch owners already know that you can bounce between different watch faces by flicking your finger across its screen. But did you also know that you can use your own photos and images as your Apple Watch's wallpaper? You can display a single photo for your wallpaper or a collection of photos that change each time you tap your watch or raise your wrist, and this customisation works on any Apple Watch — from the old-school original to the Series 4.
I’m not big into the crazier Apple Watch faces — the ones that try to fill your watch’s face with the time, data points, and other icons you tap to access this or that.
But even though I’m a purist, I’ve installed the third-party complication Better Day ($2.99) and switched to a slightly more data-heavy face, because this third-party complication gives you a much better calendar experience for your Apple Watch than Apple’s.
The Apple Watch Series 4, which is the fifth major product version of Apple's smartwatch platform, offers a number of substantial changes over its predecessor while retaining much of what has made it the most popular smartwatch around. While it is an evolution on previous versions, it represents, perhaps, the first compelling reason for early adopters to consider an upgrade.
The new $599-and-up Apple Watch will be able to measure the electrical activity of your heart, its groundbreaking ECG or EKG feature. (Both acronyms stand for "electrocardiogram.") But there are some important caveats.
The new iPhones may have been the main event of today's Apple product launch, but the Apple Watch Series 4 also made quite the impression. One of the standout features is the new heart-monitoring hardware that allows the device to take an electrocardiogram (ECG) to monitor electrical activity in the heart.
There's just one problem. We won't be getting it in Australia.
I didn’t buy a smartwatch because I thought it might make parenting easier — I bought it because it was cute and shiny and I like new toys. (I owned a Casio calculator watch long before they were popular. Oh, wait: They were never popular.)
It’s been fun to fiddle with — I can change the watch face and check the weather and I no longer have to get off the couch just to look up the date. What’s surprised me the most, though, are the ways in which this little device is helping me be more present and less stressed with my kids. Here’s how it can be used for good. (Note: I have an Apple Watch, but these features are available on most smartwatches.)
I've been using an Apple Watch since the first unit was released. Back then, the device barely made it through a day between battery charges, wasn't waterproof, lacked an integrated GPS and had a confusing and cluttered user interface. Now, in it fourth hardware iteration and with watchOS 4, the Apple Watch Series 3 comes in cellular and non-cellular variants, has GPS, is waterproof and still has perplexing, but improving software.
The heart rate monitoring features of the Apple Watch got a shout-out at yesterday's event: The new watch will monitor more heartbeat-related metrics and Apple will partner with AmWell and Stanford for a medical study. But at the same time, heart rate app Cardiogram was quietly tracking how users reacted to the day's announcements.